Five Berths Up for Grabs in G League Western Conference Playoff Race
True to the trends in the regular season, some G League winning streaks seemingly have a short shelf life. With two weeks left in the regular season, the cluster has become increasingly tight in the postseason odyssey.
Austin Spurs* (29-16):
Home cooking tasted fantastic this week as the Spurs continued their win streak and along the way clinched a playoff spot. That spells trouble for any potential postseason match up. All four wins came against playoff hopefuls. Let's see if Austin's exploits travel well this week on back-to-back nights in Iowa Friday and Sioux Falls Saturday.
South Bay Lakers* (27-18):
Still holding strong at the top of the Pacific Division, South Bay subdued Rio Grande Valley at home on Saturday, but fell victim to Northern Arizona on the road Sunday. A playoff spot is likely secure, but a division title is still up for grabs. The final two home games for the Lakers arrive on Thursday with the Clippers and Saturday vs. Raptors 905.
Sioux Falls Skyforce* (24-20):
Still shown as the division leader, the Skyforce, have six games left while Oklahoma City is only percentage points behind with four to play. Heading into the final week they will be on equal footing as far as games played. Over the past week, Sioux Falls further diminished the hopes of Santa Cruz making the postseason and was the stepping stone for Austin's playoff berth. This week contains games on Monday with Salt Lake City, Wednesday at Memphis and the home finale Saturday against Austin.
Reno Bighorns (25-18):
Late in the season, a 4-2 road trip is actually very good. Reno got run out of Austin then rebounded to top the Legends on back-to-back nights. The schedule will be heavy on games, but light on travel as the Bighorns host four games this week. Right off the bat there are two games with Iowa Monday and Wednesday followed by Friday's date with the Clippers and wrapping up on Saturday against Oklahoma City.
Rio Grande Valley (25-20):
Here's the good news. The Vipers beat a really good Fort Wayne team at home on Tuesday. On the bad side, Rio Grande Valley dropped two on the road later in the week. Barring a total collapse, they should have a winning season. However, things will out of their hands for much of the week save for a home contest with Santa Cruz on Thursday.
Texas Legends (25-20):
One week ago, it seemed that the Legends were a lock to advance to the postseason. That status seemed further enhanced after beating the Mad Ants on Wednesday. In those two other encounters with playoff contenders last week, Texas couldn't crack the code. Then one of their talented big men got a ten-day contract with the Dallas Mavericks. Although Jameel Warney could be assigned back to the Legends, there's not much breathing room with upcoming home dates with Santa Cruz Tuesday and the Clippers on Sunday.
Oklahoma City Blue (25-21):
Note how close things have become in the wildcard race. It's now possible that two teams from the Midwest Division could qualify. The tie for the division lead plan came together with a 2-1 week coupled with Sioux Falls losing at Austin. Could they take advantage of a fatigued Bighorns squad in Reno on Saturday? We shall see.
Santa Cruz Warriors (22-22):
A .500 week was not what they wanted, but it's what they got. The Memphis win keeps them in the hunt for another week, but couldn't pull off the season sweep in Sioux Falls. Two more on the road this week and they are against teams ahead of them in the form of must wins against Texas on Tuesday, Rio Grande Valley on Thursday followed by Sunday's scrum at home with Northern Arizona.
Northern Arizona Suns (21-24):
Their appearance on this list is in a token fashion. There are too many teams who can win two games and eliminate the Suns even if the NAZ boys win out.
1. Westchester Knicks* 29-16
2. Raptors 905 27-17
3. Fort Wayne Mad Ants* 26-18
4. Erie BayHawks* 26-19
5. Long Island Nets 25-20
6. Grand Rapids Drive 23-21
7. Windy City Bulls 23-22
8. Lakeland Magic 22-22